THICK- Happy Now

by | Aug 31, 2022 | Reviews

THICKHappy Now (photo by Kait DeAngelis)


My introduction to the Brooklyn-based trio, Thick, happened this past spring at Warsaw when they opened for Australian booze loving punk wild men, The Chats. I was instantly struck by how high guitarist/vocalist Nicki Sisti and bassist/vocalist Kate Black can jump while singing and playing, and their energy was infectious. They got the entire ballroom bouncing off the walls with their special brand of pop-punk. (Drummer/vocalist Shari Page was also electricity made corporeal, but hasn’t yet figured out how to jump up and down while behind a kit, which I don’t fault her for. She, too, is amazing.) My partner left their merch table that night with 5 Years Behind, which was unfortunately released in March 2020, a most unfun time to release such a great album.


But! But…Thick has just come out with a new full-length release, Happy Now, which as much as I adored 5 Years Behind, I think this new work offers a really interesting tension between the frenetic and fun drive of their music and the somber and heartbroken reality of most of the songs’ lyrics. I’m still bouncing all around my kitchen listening to Happy Now, but I am acutely aware listening to the words that there is some deep hurt roiling under the rockingness of it all.


Thick performing

Thick performing

Thick at Warsaw (photos by Kate Hoos)


I mean, hey, we’ve all just gone through (and are continuing to navigate) the craziness of this pandemic, and the mental unrest present in the lyrics of Happy Now’s first track, “Happiness” (yeah, right…we’re happy!) honestly reveals an uneasy emotional tone that I completely identify with right now: “Happiness from the outside in…it fills my gut but it leaves me thin…Look at me, you’re just like me…you fill my guts but you leave me with doubt.”  Yep, here we are…and I appreciate that the women of Thick are barreling straight into the honest intensity of the present moment (and still rocking it!).


But beyond any pandemic-related shared trauma that’s resonating with me as I listen (and re-listen) to Happy Now, I still have to say that I shake my head after cathartically enjoying all eleven tracks and say “Who hurt you?” Happy Now gives an example to all of us of how to frenetically muscle one’s way through the hardest times. What do you do when you’re “crying everyday …you’re not to blame…I’m fighting …fighting for change…take it day by day,” as the standout track “Wants & Needs” declares? The serious lyrical tone continues in “Disappear”:  “You disappear when I’m right here…swallowed by voices that I can not hear.”


And while a lot of the lyrical themes are dark, there is also the glimmer of holding onto hope and the ability to triumph despite being labeled as a “loser” or “less than” which is what the song “Loser” centers around. This was the first single from the album and came with a cheeky sports themed video that also featured FTA crew Jeanette D. Moses and Kate Hoos in front of and behind the camera.




I am grateful to Thick for writing and playing raucously through such difficult times and subject matter. Get Happy Now in whatever form you consume music. Carry this painfully exuberant music around with you and feel grateful for how much Thick rocks!


Happy Now is out now via Epitaph Records and available on all major streaming platforms.



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